• Social Fabric

Watson, Grant, 2016, Show, Exhibition or Event, Social Fabric

Abstract or Description:

An exhibition in which textiles are used to explore colonial history, international trade, labour and militant politics, focusing on the textile industry and its relation to capital, labour, colonialism, international trade and radical politics. Contemporary artworks are shown alongside original journals from Marx, Indian Chintz, films and mill workers’ recordings.

Social Fabric bites off a chunk of this history, starting with two artworks — Apparatus for the Osmotic Compensation of the Pressure of Wealth during the Contemplation of Poverty by Alice Creischer and Lower Parel by Sudhir Patwardhan — which are concerned with a part of it. Although on the face of it quite different, one takes in a broad sweep of history, the other tells the story of a particular place, they are alike in the sense that both build on extensive research which is tightly packed into a singular statement.

The role of this exhibition has been to unpack this information and materialise it through the presence of parallel archives. These two works have in effect solicited a curatorial response and the resulting displays (using historical documents, artefacts, sound recordings, books, samples and lengths of cloth as well as works by other artists) set out in an essayistic fashion a field of further information without attempting to be comprehensive. The archival displays have been developed in collaboration with a group of researchers as well as in discussion with the artists, who have all contributed by bringing forward material, and giving the archives a conceptual shape. The artist Céline Condorelli has designed a curtain and two support structures for the material, including a metal archive table and a wall unit, working with colour and form to bring compositional unity to the display without overly regulating its eclecticism.

Social Fabric is a part of The Weaving & We:Hangzhou Triennial of Fiber Art 2016. Exhibition curated by Grant Watson with research by Christine Checinska, Nida Ghouse, Shanay Jhaveri, Nada Raza and Karen Roswell.

Social FabricHangzhou, China25 Aug-25 Oct 2016Museum/exhibition
Official URL: http://www.fiberarthangzhou.com/Site_En/index.aspx
Subjects: Creative Arts and Design > W100 Fine Art > W190 Fine Art not elsewhere classified
School or Centre: School of Arts & Humanities
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2016 11:49
Last Modified: 28 Nov 2019 15:26
URI: https://researchonline.rca.ac.uk/id/eprint/2537
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